Inaccessible and remote for most of its history, Kochi Prefecture has developed a unique culture and its people a proudly independent spirit which is tempered by an outlook on life that is as sunny as its long summer days. While still off the radar of most international visitors, it has become is much easier to get to Kochi in recent years and, these days, you can be tucking into a plate of seared bonito in Kochi’s famous Hirome Market
less than 5 hours after hopping on the shinkansen at Shin Osaka Station. If you schedule a stop in Okayama, the Nanpu Limited Express train which crosses the 13-km long Great Seto Bridge to Shikoku and carries you from the flatlands of Kagawa, through the mountains of central Shikoku through narrow gorges, all the way to Kochi City in just 2.5 hours.
The big city delights of Osaka, so easily accessible from Kansai Airport, are not to be missed on a visit to Japan, but planning a few days to take in the natural splendor of Kochi is the perfect way to refresh after your time in the big city.
Kochi takes up almost 40% of the area of the island of Shikoku and we have a huge variety of things to see and do here. Explore the nature and culture of the Shimanto River Valley
along Japan’s last free-flowing river as it travels from the mountains of central Shikoku to the Pacific. The Niyodo River, famed for its incredible, crystal-clear “Niyodo Blue
” hues, has become a hub for outdoor sports suitable for all ages and abilities, as well as a magnet for those looking for souvenir photos that will make their friends green with envy. To the east, the Muroto Peninsular
has unforgettable opportunities to explore the history of the Shikoku 88 Temple Pilgrimage and make friends with locals in the kitchen while trying your hand at making country-style vegetable sushi. In the Ashizuri Uwakai National Park
, which includes the southernmost point of Shikoku
and the geological wonderland of the Tatsukushi coastline
, local guides are waiting to share their culture that's closely intertwined with the spectacular natural environment of this remote subtropical paradise.
Wherever you may choose, you are assured of delicious food made from the freshest seasonal local produce and a friendly welcome that will whet your appetite for return visits.
Our special Osaka to Kochi page is packed with ideas about how to get the most out of your time in Kochi. We hope to see you here in Japan’s best kept secret sometime soon!